Listen for the bell: God brings true friends into our lives
What kind of friend are you? Are you a fair- weather friend, one who is a friend only when convenience or need takes over? Are you a friend only to those who serve your agenda or are you a true friend?
What exactly is a true friend? Friendship involves having a common bond with someone. True friendship involves trust, accountability, faithfulness and loyalty. A true friend is there in time of need and never asks for anything in return.
True friendship listens and does not judge. True friendship involves sharing thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment or negative criticism.We are all given the ability to make choices, including who we choose as our friends.
There are many stories about true friendship in the Bible. We read about God sharing his intentions with Abraham in Genesis 18:17-33.
In John 18-21 it is the story of forgiveness after Peter denies knowing Jesus and Jesus forgave him.
In John 15, the Lord Jesus calls us His friends and He laid down his life for us.
God’s Word tells us that a friend sticks closer than a brother, and that in order for one to be a friend, one must show themselves friendly. Proverbs 18.24.
There is a story of two horses in a field that I would like to share with you. This is a testament of genuine friendship.
“Just up the road from my home is a field, with two horses in it. From a distance, each looks like every other horse. But if you stop your car, or are walking by, you will notice something quite amazing.
“Looking into the eyes of one horse will disclose that he is blind. His owner has chosen not to have him put down, but has made a good home for him. This alone is amazing.
“If nearby and listening, you will hear the sound of a bell. Looking for the source of the sound, you will see that is comes from the smaller horse in the field. Attached to her halter is a small bell. It lets her blind friend know where she is, so he can follow her.
“As you stand and watch these two friends, you'll see how she is always checking on him, and that he will listen for her bell and then slowly walk to where she is, trusting that she will not lead him astray.
“When she returns to the shelter of the barn each evening, she stops occasionally and looks back, making sure her friend isn't too far behind to hear the bell.
“Like the owners of these two horses, God does not throw us away just because we are not perfect or because we have problems or challenges. He watches over us and even brings others into our lives to help us when we are in need.
“Sometimes we are the blind horse being guided by the little ringing bell of those whom God places in our lives. Other times we are the guide horse, helping others see.
“Good friends are like this. You don’t always see them, but you know they are always there.
“Please listen for my bell and I’ll remember to listen for yours.” — anonymous
What kind of friend do you desire to be? The choice is up to you.